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Evaluating model simulations of twentieth-century sea-level rise. Part II: regional sea-level changes
Meyssignac, B.; Slangen, A.B.A.; Melet, A.; Church, J.A.; Fettweis, X.; Marzeion, B.; Agosta, C.; Ligtenberg, S.R.M.; Spada, G.; Richter, K.; Palmer, M.D.; Roberts, C.D.; Champollion, N. (2017). Evaluating model simulations of twentieth-century sea-level rise. Part II: regional sea-level changes. J. Clim. 30(21): 8565–8593. https://dx.doi.org/10.1175/jcli-d-17-0112.1
In: Journal of Climate. American Meteorological Society: Boston, MA. ISSN 0894-8755; e-ISSN 1520-0442, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in  Authors 

Keyword
    Marine
Author keywords
    Sea level; Climate change; Climate models

Authors  Top 
  • Meyssignac, B.
  • Slangen, A.B.A., more
  • Melet, A.
  • Church, J.A.
  • Fettweis, X., more
  • Marzeion, B.
  • Agosta, C., more
  • Ligtenberg, S.R.M.
  • Spada, G.
  • Richter, K.
  • Palmer, M.D.
  • Roberts, C.D.
  • Champollion, N.

Abstract
    Twentieth-century regional sea level changes are estimated from 12 climate models from phase 5 of the Climate Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5). The output of the CMIP5 climate model simulations was used to calculate the global and regional sea level changes associated with dynamic sea level, atmospheric loading, glacier mass changes, and ice sheet surface mass balance contributions. The contribution from groundwater depletion, reservoir storage, and dynamic ice sheet mass changes are estimated from observations as they are not simulated by climate models. All contributions are summed, including the glacial isostatic adjustment (GIA) contribution, and compared to observational estimates from 27 tide gauge records over the twentieth century (1900–2015). A general agreement is found between the simulated sea level and tide gauge records in terms of interannual to multidecadal variability over 1900–2015. But climate models tend to systematically underestimate the observed sea level trends, particularly in the first half of the twentieth century. The corrections based on attributable biases between observations and models that have been identified in Part I of this two-part paper result in an improved explanation of the spatial variability in observed sea level trends by climate models. Climate models show that the spatial variability in sea level trends observed by tide gauge records is dominated by the GIA contribution and the steric contribution over 1900–2015. Climate models also show that it is important to include all contributions to sea level changes as they cause significant local deviations; note, for example, the groundwater depletion around India, which is responsible for the low twentieth-century sea level rise in the region.

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